Water Supply Bylaw review

Closed 6 Nov 2023

Opened 3 Oct 2023

Overview

As part of the review of the Hamilton Water Supply Bylaw 2013 (the Bylaw), Hamilton City Council (Council) is seeking feedback on the proposal to continue the Bylaw with minor changes:

  • the inclusion of updated legislation, standards, codes and policies
  • the inclusion of a definition of ‘working day’
  • recognition of Waikato River legislation through the inclusion of Te Ture Whaimana o Te Awa o Waikato - the vision and strategy for the Waikato River - in the introduction section.

This Statement of Proposal (SOP) is made for the purposes of sections 83, 86 and 160(3)(b)(ii) of the Local Government Act 2002 (LGA), and the Health Act 1956.

What is the Water Supply Bylaw?

Council provides a treated water supply for the city, and supplements water supply for some rural areas outside Hamilton’s boundary. The Bylaw provides regulations for the protection of the water supply network, and for managing water use.

The current Water Supply Bylaw:

  • protects, promotes, and maintains public health and safety
  • promotes efficient use of the city’s treated drinking water and protects against waste or misuse of water
  • protects the city’s water supply system, including pipes and reservoirs, from pollution and contamination
  • prevents the unauthorised use of the city’s water supply and system.

Why your views matter

The Bylaw was last reviewed in 2013 and requires a review every ten years as a requirement under the Local Government Act 2002 (LGA). This provides an opportunity for Council to check in with our community on how the Bylaw is working and consider feedback.

Reasons for the proposal

Council has been working through a review process which allows us to identify and assess potential issues with the Bylaw and provide options on how to fix them. Identified issues have included: 

  • outdated references to legislations, regulations, codes, and standards
  • inconsistency with recently revised bylaws (Trade Waste and Wastewater Bylaw and Stormwater Bylaw) in terms of definitions and river protection
  • limited clarity for the public on matters relating to connections (no reference to related Council Policy)
  • limited enforcement opportunities to provide for protection of the water supply and system
  • limited requirement for customers to comply with fire protection standards.

The review has told us that:

  • aside from outdated legal references and minor changes, the Bylaw is fit-for-purpose, for the foreseeable future
  • the majority of the issues that have been identified can either be resolved by the Bylaw as it is, or by using other bylaws, policies, or design standards.

Council is proposing to continue the Bylaw with only minor changes to address outdated legal references and to align with other Council bylaws and policies.

The proposal includes:

  • updating references to new legislation, regulations, codes, and standards including those related to water services, backflow protection, water metering, and fire protection 
  • adding a definition of 'working day' to provide clarity and consistency with recently revised bylaws
  • referencing Te Ture Whaimana o Te Awa o Waikato to provide some context for regulation, and provide consistency with recently revised bylaws (Trade Waste and Wastewater Bylaw and Stormwater Bylaw)
  • referencing Council Policy to provide clarity on matters relating to connections.

Options

Council is consulting on the intention to continue the current Bylaw with proposed changes. In compliance with the Local Government Act 2002, Council is providing two options for consideration.

Option one (preferred): Continue the Bylaw with proposed changes
This option would include changes to ensure the Bylaw reflects the most up to date legislation, and provides clarity to the public.

Option two: Continue the Bylaw with no changes 
This option would involve keeping the current Bylaw without any changes. This would mean that opportunities for improvement identified through the review would not occur.

Have your say on the Bylaw

Before making any final decisions, we would like to hear from anyone who frequently uses Hamilton’s treated water supply, or any member of the public.

The proposed Bylaw can be viewed at the bottom of this page under the heading Related.

Please get your feedback to us by 6 November 2023.

Next steps
Council will collect and analyse all feedback and this will be presented at a Hamilton City Council Regulatory and Hearings Committee meeting in the first half of 2024. At this meeting, submitters who want to speak to their written submission will be able to do so. Council will then consider all the views and make a final decision.